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Baule, Yaure or Guro Mask 17.5″ on Stand – Ivory Coast – African Tribal Art

Original price was: $190.00.Current price is: $95.00.

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This mask was carved by either the Baule, Yaure or Guro tribes of Ivory Coast, as it has characteristics from all three. This piece measures 14.5 inches tall and 17.5 inches on its stand and weighs 4.5 pounds on the stand. There are some minor imperfections including scrapes and scuffs – please inspect photos.

 

This is a piece from the Dave Dahl Collection. This is a piece from the Dave Dahl Collection. Please feel free to contact us with your best offers! Please include item title or SKU.

Type of Object

Face Mask

Country of Origin

Ivory Coast

Ethnicity

Baule, Guro, Yaure

Material

Wood, Pigment

Approximate Age

Unknown

Height

14.5" mask | 17.5" on stand

Width

9.5”

Depth

5''

Weight

0.5 lb mask | 4.5 lbs with stand

Overall Condition

fair with minor imperfections – see photos

Tribe Information

About the Baule People

The Baule are originally part of a breakaway group of the Akan people from Ghana. In the 17th century, Queen Abla Pokou led a group on an exodus away from the main Ashanti Confederacy after a war broke out due to disagreements among the factions. Pokou realized that she and her followers may be in harms way, so she took her people and headed westward. Legend says the group came upon the Comoé River, with its dangerous waters and needed a way to safely cross. With the enemy gaining on them, Queen Pokou asked a diviner for advice. The diviner, after much thought, told her the gods required a sacrifice. Everyone began throwing their most prized possessions into the river; gold, ivory, cattle, everything they owned, hoping to appease the gods. The diviner shook his head and said that our sons are our most prized possessions. Pokou, knowing that her duty as queen was more important than that of a mother, decided then to sacrifice her only son, throwing him into the water and calling out “Ba ouli”, translated to “the child is dead”, giving them the name Baule. After the sacrifice was made, hippopotamuses came up from the river and formed a bridge allowing the queen and her people to cross.

The Baule settled in what is now known as Côte d’Ivoire or Ivory Coast. They began defeating current inhabitants of the area and quickly became the middle man post for North and South trading routes. Towns and villages sprouted up with each being independent from one another, making their own decisions with the primacy of a council of elders. Smaller communities were usually governed by a village-chief whereas large villages were ruled by a king or queen. Considered an egalitarian society, everyone is equal and has a say in the overall agenda of the people, including slaves...

Read more about the Baule here.

About the Guro People

“Between the Baule and the Yaure to the west, the Malinke to the north and the Bete and We to the south, the Guro people live surrounded by savannah and forest. They migrated from the north during the 16th century and number about 200,000. Originally they were called Kweni, but they were violently colonized between 1906 and 1912 and were given the Baule name Guro by the invading French colonials. Guro villages have rounded houses in the northern area and rectangular houses in the southern region. Village life is regulated by a council of elders, representing each main family, and by secret societies. The Guro farm predominantly cotton, rice, coffee and cocoa - the men clear the fields and the women plant. “

Sources:
Baquart, Jean-Baptiste. The Tribal Arts of Africa. New York: Thames and Hudson Inc. 1998. Print.

About the Yaure People

“The Yaure people, 20,000 in total, settled in the territory between the Baule to the west, the Guro to the east and Lake Kossou to the north. They are divided into three main groups living in approximately twenty villages by a council of elders, leads each village. Their language, culture, religion and art are influenced by their powerful neighbors, the Baule and the Guro. Nevertheless, they possess a strong sense of identity and have evolved a characteristic and refined art.
The Yaure adorn a variety of everyday objects with figurative representations, but it is their masks that reveal their artistic abilities.”

Source:
Baquart, Jean-Baptiste. The Tribal Arts of Africa. New York: Thames and Hudson Inc. 1998. Print.

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